The Vision of Children Foundation aims to cure hereditary childhood blindness and vision disorders, and to improve the quality of life of visually impaired individuals and their families. Since 1991, we have funded scientists around the world, focusing on several approaches to healing the vision pathways. Knowledge about genetic eye diseases has increased dramatically, and treatments and cures are within reach. But more funding is needed for research to give children the gift of sight.
There are many causes of blindness and vision disorders. Most vision research funds and the health community focus on decreasing the incidence of blindness that is preventable because it is caused by malnutrition, diseases and premature birth. However, inherited eye diseases caused by rare genetic defects that are passed on by the mother or father lead to more than 60 percent of cases of blindness among infants. Research on such rare eye disorders have traditionally been under-funded.
Vision of Children encourages the study of and funds research on a variety of genetic eye diseases, such as ocular albinism, oculocutaneous albinism, nystagmus, myopia and blue cone monochromacy. These studies will lead to better understanding, treatments and cures for many eye disorders. Our researchers are driving science to the horizon of actually restoring vision to children who cannot see properly. We also provide educational support and services to families impacted by vision disorders.
Globally, there are estimated to be 285 million people with visual impairments, of which 19 million are children. Many of them are born with uncorrectable hereditary eye disorders that severely impair their vision and have a devastating impact on their quality of life. With recent advances in molecular genetic techniques, new genes that cause eye disease are being identified. At the same time, groundbreaking research to find treatment and cures can make a lasting impact on millions of children.